I’ve always thought that the sign of a great copywriter was how well he or she wrote copy.
I say this because there are a lot of great headline writers, a host of great poster writers, a multitude of great slogan writers, but there aren’t that many great writers of copy.
Writing copy is a craft that takes time to master and in this crazy age of instant gratification writers just don’t seem prepared to take that time. To sweat over every word. To find a four letter word to replace a six letter word because it made the type work better
Many of them also don’t seem brave enough to break the rules, to tell the client that he is wrong.
As Bill Bernbach, said:
“ We are so busy measuring public opinion we forget we can mould it. We are so busy listening to statistics we forget we can create them.”
Mind you, sometimes one-liners work can work brilliantly, too. ‘Trainee Accountant 39’ for the Economist* being a case but these work usually much better on posters.
I might not have always succeeded but I always tried my hardest to do the moulding and the creating.
*(The late, great David Abbot I salute you. You were always my hero and you always will be).
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